Manchester City are considering a move for Steaua Bucuresti defender Vlad Chiriches at the end of the season, according to the Express. The 23-year-old has been in good form for the Romanian club and has scored two goals and managed one assist from 10 UEFA Europa League appearances this season.
The report states Roberto Mancini sent scouts to monitor the defender in action during Steaua's 1-0 win over Chelsea last week. Chiriches is likely to replace ex-Arsenal player Kolo Toure, who is set to leave the Premier League champions at the end of the season. In addition to this, England international Joleon Lescott could also make a move away from the Etihad.
Chiriches impressed Mancini when he scored a stunner against Ajax in the early stages of the Europa League. And the youngster was once again an important player, as Bucuresti beat the Blues.
The addition of the Romanian international to the Citizens' starting line-up will bolster their squad and the Express claims the centre-back is unlikely to demand the same wages as Toure. The 31-year-old City defender has failed to impress for the English champions, especially during the absence of their captain, Vincent Kompany.
However, any approach from City will likely have to factor interest from Russian clubs Zenit St Petersburg and Anzhi Makhachkala, with Italian club AC Milan also keeping a tab on the Romanian international.
Defender Relishing Chances at Etihad
Meanwhile, Toure has now expressed his delight at featuring regularly for the English champions in the absence of Kompany. The 31-year-old went on to praise his team mates for their support and claimed he always gave his best when playing for City.
"I feel very good at the moment. I've had the chance recently to play more and I'm really enjoying being able to give my best for my team. Everyone around me and all my team- mates have helped me a lot, and that's very important. Every time I have played for City, I just give 100 percent - for me the main thing is just to work hard," Toure told the club Web site.